TIMIPRE SYLVIA APOLOGISES OVER DISTRESS CAUSED BY FUEL PRICE MISINFORMATION
Timipre Sylva, the Minister of State for Petroleum, on Friday apologised to Nigerians for the distress and inconvenience caused by the 'unfortunate information' about the hike in fuel price.
Sylva, in a statement on Friday emphasized that neither his office, nor President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the increase in the price of petrol to N212 per litre.
Recall Eons Intelligence reported that the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPRA) earlier released a template stating that the new price of petrol has been increased to N212.6 per litre - a development that sparked outrage across the country.
The NNPC,however, issued a statement insisting that the pump price of fuel remains status quo till the end of March.
Consequently, the PPPRA deleted the post it earlier posted on its website in the early hours of Friday.
CONSEQUENCES OF THE FUEL PRICE MISINFORMATION
Following the misinformation on the increase in fuel price, queues have returned to petrol stations as citizens have begun panic buying.
Some petrol stations have paused the sale of Premium Motor Spirit creating artificial scarcity.
Below is the full statement issued by Timipre Sylva, the Minister of State for Petroleum:
Dear Nigerians, you are by now very aware of the news trending that the Federal Government has increased the price of petrol to N212.6 per litre.
Irrespective of the source of that information, I want to assure you that it is completely untrue. Neither Mr. President who is the Minister of Petroleum Resources nor my humble self who deputises for him as Minister of State, has approved that the pump price of petrol should be increased by one naira. I would therefore urge you to disregard this misleading information.
You are all aware that for the past few months the government has been in consultation with organized labour to find the least painful option to respond to the global rise in the price of crude, which in turn has inevitably led to an increase in the price of PMS. It is unthinkable that the government would unilaterally abandon these discussions and act in the manner suggested by the information under reference.
Cynism and deceit have never been the trademark of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
I would like to equally assure you that the engagement with organized labour and other stakeholders will continue even as the calculations to arrive at a reasonable price regime are being done; all in good faith, and you will be availed of the final outcome at the appropriate time.
Until then, all marketers are strongly advised to maintain the current pump price of PMS before the emergence of this unfortunate information. Those who may want to take advantage of this unfortunate misinformation to extort Nigerians should not give in to such temptation as there are regulatory mechanisms that govt can enforce to protect its citizens.
In conclusion, I want to sincerely apologise to all Nigerians for any distress and inconvenience the unfortunate information might have caused.